Western Uganda

Education in Uganda

Many see education in Uganda as the key to the future, however it remains under-invested in with often poorly trained teachers and classes with sometime upwards of a hundred pupils. Indeed recently teachers of primary seven children (those taking their exams to progress to secondary school) were asked to take the exam themselves and 75% failed! Education is provided through a mix of private and government funded schools ~ however the education even at government schools is not free as families have to pay to "rent" the classrooms, provide money for food for the teachers and buy school equipment such as paper, toilet rolls and brushes etc. These "charges" often mean children from poorer families are "chased" from school when the monies are not forthcoming and they remain excluded until they are. Many never return.

There are five schools in Ruhanga itself; three primary schools and two secondary schools. The nearest university is in Mbarara. Typically children have seven years of primary education (P1-P7) taking exams at the end of each year which they must pass in order to progress. It is therefore not uncommon to see classes with children of very different ages because of this and also because many children start school late. Those who pass their PLE's (Primary Leaving Exams) then go onto four years of secondary education and at the end of S4 (secondary four) they will either stay in education for a further two years to take their Uganda Advanced Certificate of Education (A levels) or leave and pursue a vocational path at various vocational training centres.

For many, learning a trade is a preferred option as out of a workforce of some 35,000,000 there are only around 35,000 formal jobs in Uganda making higher education desirable but not necessarily the best path to pursue to earn a much needed income where there is no welfare safety net. Those who achieve a Grade 1 in their PLEs ~ Primary Leaving Exams ~ (that's an aggregate of 12 or less with an aggregate of four being the top mark possible in the four subjects of English language, mathematics, science and social studies) will normally be entitled to a bursary to assist with their secondary education often around 150,000/- a term off fees of some 400,000/- ~ making access to better performing schools within the reach of some families.

As such, many parents prefer to send their children to boarding school as it is widely recognised that children who are freed from the daily grind of gathering firewood, collecting water and other household tasks perform better at school when boarding. Students achieving below a Grade 1 do not receive a bursary and, as such, many then drop out of school as the costs are beyond their family's reach.



 
 
 
 
 

 

Ruhanga Boys School

Ruhanga Boys School

Confusingly named as this government aided primary school takes both girls and boys.

Originally a church school, Ruhanga boys was founded in 1954 and in 1979 became a state school offering approximately188 places.

Ruhanga Boys School

Ruhanga Development School

Ruhanga Development School

The privately owned Ruhanga Development Primary School started life as a nursery but now has some 435 pupils and has now started a boarding facility.

Subsided by a UK charity, the school has recently performed very well in local examinations.

Ruhanga Development School

Seventh Day Adventist Primary

Seventh Day Adventist Primary

The third local primary school is also government aided and has around just 100 pupils.

Facilities are basic with no windows in the classrooms and few learning materials but a dedicated workforce!

Seventh Day Adventist Primary

Seventh Day Adventist Secondary

Seventh Day Adventist Secondary

The only government aided secondary school in the village, this is a good looking school although, as ever, in need of further funding.

Though technically "free" families have to pay to rent the classrooms, provide books and teacher meals. 

Seventh Day Adventist Secondary

Team College Ruhanga

Team College

A privately owned not-for-profit secondary school, the experienced headmaster offers places to brighter students whose family's can't afford other schools.

A new volunteer project has just commenced at the school for details click here.

Team College Ruhanga

 
 

Education in Uganda

Education in Uganda

Education in Uganda

Education in Uganda

 


Team College

Secondary School Volunteering in Uganda

A new project assisting secondary school students at a not-for-profit school in the village.
More >

 
 


Education in Uganda

Education in Uganda

"Free" primary education was introduced in Uganda in 1997 boosting numbers from two million in 1986 to six million by the turn of the century however this sudden influx of pupils put too heavy a strain on the infrastructure with massive class sizes, poorly trained teachers and, in general, a poor level of education with one Ruhanga teacher recently explaining how rats laid eggs! You can help when volunteering in Ruhanga by working with young people to support their educational outcomes and attainments.

 
 


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